UAE investors to pump $19 bln into West African infrastructure projects

Investors from the United Arab Emirates have pledged to invest a total of $19 billion in seventeen infrastructure projects in West Africa.

The announcement was made in Dubai during the inaugural West Africa Investment Forum.

The $19 billion has been secured for projects in a range of sectors including roads, railways, bridges, checkpoints, dry-ports, airports, energy, and food security & water.

The projects will be executed as public-private partnerships (PPPs) between the governments of the UEMOA member states and international commercial entities. The the UEMOA is the West Africa Economic & Monetary Union.

The commitments announced included $16 billion by Trojan General Contracting LLC (part of Royal Group, owned by H.H. Sheikh Tahnoon Bin Zayed Al Nahyan) along with Earth Capital for equity participation in railway and road sector projects across the West African region.

Essar Projects Ltd., a subsidiary of Essar Group, commited $1.98 billion towards investments in road, bridge, airport and thermal power-plant projects in Benin, Guinea Bissau and Niger; and $700 million commitment was made by Hasan Juma Backer Trading & Contracting LLC, an Oman entity. This amount will be used towards building a dry-port development project in Cote d’Ivoire.

Senegal, which is among the region’s largest and most stable economies, proved the most popular investment destination in the region. A number of important strategic partnerships for the implementation of projects were also announced at the Forum. Among those, a strategic partnership agreement (SPA) was made between UEMOA, BOAD and GFCL to create a company responsible for managing project execution and timelines, and to continue to seek foreign direct investment for future projects in the region.

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